Online College of Art and Design
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Do you love music but can't find a way to get your GCSE qualification? If so then this course is for you! This is exactly the same GCSE Music course you would study at your local school or college except it's online and can be studied FROM HOME and in your own time!
The course will follow the current OCR GCSE specification.
The course will be based on the textbook recommended for the OCR GCSE.
This specification is well-regarded among colleges and universities due to its integrated structure allowing learners to grasp the interconnection of all aspects of Music practice and appreciation, and thereby giving a firm basis from which to springboard into A-level and beyond.
Two compositions are required – one of the candidate's own choice and another to a brief released by the exam board on September 1st of the year the candidate is to take their assessment. Compositions need to be submitted as a recording accompanied by a score, lead sheet, or written
account. This recording can be done live (carried out by the student and accompanied by other musicians if necessary, who do not need to be following the course) or electronically produced (for which there is plenty of free or cheap software available).
Performances must total a minimum of 4 minutes including at least 1 minute of ensemble work. Ideally, students study these pieces with their instrumental teachers with guidance by their GCSE music teacher on piece selection. For those students without teachers, we are able and happy to
provide instruction on performance throughout the course, including regular assessments. All students need to be aware that they will be responsible for finding someone else to perform alongside for the ensemble aspect of the course. This should not be a major issue as instrumental
teachers often have other students who could participate in a duo/ trio or the teachers themselves can perform with the candidates (the other performers in the ensemble need not be GCSE candidates). Alternatively, candidates could find people to perform with through their local music
centre or even through advertising online.
To ensure all the submitted exam performances are the candidates’ own, the teacher will observe over Skype whilst they are recording their performance. Listening and Appraising
Within classes, students will learn how to aurally analyse each of the musical elements and compositional devices listed within the specification. To help expand the number of pieces studied, students would then apply such analysis to different pieces within the same Area of Study. Allowing
for peer review, the teacher may ask students to mark each other's work, which would also ensure they are encountering a greater number of pieces.
Homework will be given most lessons, and much of it will be further listening in addition to musical analysis, composition, and performance practice.
Teacher assessments are continuous during the live taught lessons, monitoring and marking of non-exam assessments, and summative tests. Both performance and composition are non-examined assessments. (The teacher has confirmed with OCR that it is acceptable for him to carry out these assessments and sign the authentication forms). The listening and appraising component is externally assessed at the end of the course and thus will need to take place at a centre.
GCSE Music is split into three components:
1- Integrated Portfolio (30% of the mark) including:
- Performance on the learner’s chosen instrument.
- Composition to a brief set by the learner.
2- Practical Component (30% of the mark) including:
- Ensemble performance.
- Composition to a board-set brief.
3- Listening Exam (40% of the mark) testing:
- Listening and appraisal skills related to four areas of study.
- Notation skills.
NOTE: It is the responsibility of the parent/guardian to arrange their examinations. It is possible to sit Music examinations at centres in London and perhaps at your local school or college. We recommend that you check with your intended examination centre before electing to study Music online.
Who is this course for?
- Entry Requirements: 10 years or over, No previous music qualifications are required and enthusiastic beginners are welcome but any student not currently having regular lessons must agree to learning to play an instrument or sing in addition to the live lessons as musical performance is a key part of the course (30%). There are opportunities to do this online through your school and can be arranged: please contact your school for details.
Enthusiastic about music
Willing to learn and take instruction
Able to play music, sing or willing to take lessons
Have a musical instrument (Voice is acceptable)
Have a computer and internet connection
Leads to A Level Music or similar Level 3 Diploma course
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